All DeKalb Class of 2017 Graduation Ceremonies At Georgia World Congress Center

All DeKalb County high school graduations will be held during the week of May 22-27, 2017

DeKalb Superintendent Stephen Green
Dr. Stephen Green
DeKalb County

Report submitted by Dr. Vasanne Tinsley at the request of Dr. Stephen Green.
Graduation ceremonies are a major component of the closing of each school year. In recent years, schools have used governmental buildings, arenas and even churches to hold events. During the 2015-16 school year. However, the district was challenged by the AFL-CIO on the holding of school district graduation ceremonies in religious facilities. While measures were taken to comply with the request to not house ceremonies in religious venues (and some locations were changed), it was agreed that the district would work to address the concern for the 2016-17 school year.
During the summer of 2016, Dr. Green created a District Graduation Task Force to begin looking at venues, available dates and costs for specific locations to house district ceremonies. Based on a cost and accessibility comparison, the committee determined that the best option would be the Georgia World Congress Center. It has been decided that all high school graduations will be held during the week of May 22-27, 2017 at the Georgia World Congress Center.

DeKalb County School District Graduation Schedule
Georgia World Congress Center
2016-17 School Year

Date School Time
Monday, May 22, 2017 McNair High School 10:00 AM
Towers High School 1:00 PM
Columbia High School 4:00 PM
Cedar Grove High School 7:00 PM
Tuesday, May 23, 2017 Redan High School 10:00 AM
Lithonia High School 1:00 PM
DeKalb School of the Arts 4:00 PM
Wednesday, May 24, 2017 Elizabeth Andrews High School 10:00 AM
Stephenson High School 1:00 PM
DeKalb Early College Academy 4:00 PM
Stone Mountain High School 7:00 PM
Thursday, May 25, 2017 Miller Grove High School 10:00 AM
Destiny Academy 1:00 PM
Chamblee Charter High School 4:00 PM
Dunwoody High School 7:00 PM
Friday, May 26, 2017 Martin Luther King Jr. High School 10:00 AM
Arabia Mountain High School 1:00 PM
Southwest DeKalb High School 4:00 PM
Druid Hills High School 7:00 PM
Saturday, May 27, 2017 Tucker High School 10:00 AM
Lakeside High School 1:00 PM
Wednesday, May 24, 2017 Clarkston High School @ Hallford Stadium 5:30 PM
Thursday, May 25, 2017 Cross Keys High School @Adams Stadium 7:30 PM
Friday, May 19, 2017 Margret Harris High School @ MHHS 10:00 AM

8 responses to “All DeKalb Class of 2017 Graduation Ceremonies At Georgia World Congress Center

  1. Chamblee High Parent

    Lord, how stupid is this? Graduate from a place miles from your high school?

  2. This is ridiculous.

  3. Why is the location of high school graduations a concern of a labor union?

  4. I understand having an option for those schools who are struggling with finding a location, but if the school has a location and it doesn’t violate any rules, why force them to move it?

  5. Does the standardized location and cost mean that high schools will no longer demand students pay all four years of class dues in order to participate in graduation ceremonies? I know at Lakeside, they’re saying my kid can’t march without paying these fees.

  6. The venues available for large graduating classes (other than DCSD stadiums and you’re screwed if it rains and you have more than 2 family members attending) are few and far between (and don’t exist in DeKalb other than churches) and they charge a fortune for one school to foot the bill. Will the school district pay for the 3 days or do all the schools have to chip in? If DCSD is paying, hooray! In the past, many schools have paid tens of thousands of dollars to find a location. DeKalb County has no venue large enough – perhaps we need to push the county to build such a venue rather than having to go to the World Congress Center, Civic Center, GaTech, Fox Theater, etc.
    I understand that churches, synagogues, temples create issues for many in our diverse DCSD community from the atheists to Buddhists, agnostics, Muslims, Jewish amd Christian families so a more generic option is needed. I appreciate that Dr. Green has taken a position and has coordinated a venue rather than leaving schools out there on their own to find a venue (if DCSD is covering the cost). I suspect each school had the option to use the DCSD stadiums and chose not to. If that’s the case, those unhappy should contact their principal and school council.

  7. What about underclassmen who want to attend graduation? Some of the graduation ceremonies are scheduled during the school day, some during final exams even. Are younger siblings expected to either miss school or skip their older siblings’ graduation?

  8. I am okay with the location of the World Congress Center because it allows for students to have more than 2 people attend graduation ceremonies (and there is public transportation available). But to have the ceremonies in the middle of a work day is not acceptable. What about parents that do not have paid leave? There was a gentleman that spoke at the 11/7/16 BOE mtg from Towers High School that stated that many of their parents would not be able to attend a ceremony at 1:00 on a Monday. How tragic that parents will have to make the decision on attending graduation or earning $$ to put food on the table.